This guidance has been produced by the BMC Clubs Committee and is intended to provide a check list to help the committee members of BMC clubs consider important issues in the running of their club and to develop good practice.
As this is a check list there is currently little detail on the issues covered and there will be issues here that are not relevant to all clubs; equally, there will be issues relevant to some clubs that are not to be found here. Guidance notes are available on several topics on the BMC website and the BMC Clubs' Committee will create more where there is need.
Is the constitution fit for the needs of the Club?
Refer to the BMC recommended constitution
Does it contain the recommended clauses to protect the club and its committee?
Is it reviewed regularly (annual review is recommended)?
Does it contain the BMC Participation Statement?
Has the Club considered if it is constituted in the most appropriate manner? Being an unincorporated association is adequate for most clubs. However, establishment as a Mutual Society under the 1965 Industrial and Provident Society Act may provide another layer of protection for club officers. There are other options - refer to the BMC Guidelines on Club Status.
Are committee meetings and AGMs held as required?
Are there appropriate rules and policies to cover the activities of the Club?
Are all officers aware of their responsibilities?
Are there handover notes for newly elected officers?
Officers and committee
Does the club have the required officers as set out in the constitution?
Are the roles of officers and ordinary committee members established and understood?
Is succession managed? Do officers stay in their role for too long? Is thought given to bringing in new blood and to represent the interest of new members or other groups?
Do committee members understand their responsibility for the running of the club?
Are there arrangements for handling officers' duties in unexpected absence?
Are minutes of committee meetings taken and are they accessible to members and for committee reference?
Are written notes available to assist in the handover to newly elected officers or to provide for continuity in an unplanned absence of an officer?
Is there an annual diary to ensure that all regular actions take place on time?
Does the Club have any contingency plans to help deal with crisis events befalling a member of the Club whether on a meet or on a private activity?
Do subscriptions meet running needs, and is there a cash flow forecast for future years?
Is the income and expenditure accurately recorded?
Is expenditure from club funds adequately controlled?
Are annual accounts produced, audited or reviewed and submitted to an AGM?
Are there adequate reserves, especially where a hut is owned?
Is there adequate evidence of items of expenditure?
Are the bank signatories authorised by the committee and is all required bank documentation in order?
Are there appropriate means of collecting money from members for subscriptions and meets, for example to meet the needs of all members including those without a bank account?
Has the control of internet-based accounts, online banking and facilities such as PayPal been agreed by the committee?
Are dues to the BMC paid promptly and calculated accurately?
Responsibilities to BMC
Are all fees paid on time? (See Finances section above). New members’ public liability insurance is valid for three months without registration of membership and payment of dues.
Does the designated Main BMC Contact relay BMC email messages to other committee members?
Are the BMC Club Guidelines regularly reviewed for relevance and acted upon?
Advise BMC of any incident that might lead to an insurance claim.
Is Data Protection registration required and current?
Does the club only record data appropriate to its activities, e.g. contact details, age, gender, and membership of other clubs?
Do members have the opportunity to opt out of the publication in club publications of personal information, e.g. address?
Are the necessary procedures for safeguarding data in place?
If the club has a hut, are all the required registrations current, checks made, equipment serviced and records kept? Is an annual Health and Safety review of the hut made? Reference should be made to the BMC Hut Guidelines and followed as relevant.
If the club has members under 18 or allows them on club activities does it follow the BMC Club Guidelines on Child Protection?
Is there a Health and Safety Policy? Does it cover working parties and all other activities of the club?
Is the website managed by an officer of the club?
Does it meet the club's needs?
Is website data regularly and frequently backed up?
If there is member access, is there adequate password protection?
If there is a forum, is it properly monitored? Comments deemed racist or sexist can create serious problems within a club.
Are steps taken to keep the website current?
Is the BMC BMC Participation Statement featured on the website?
If the club uses social networking sites, are they properly monitored?
Electronic records and communication
Do officers of the club have club-owned email addresses?
Are all club emails sent without disclosing the addresses of all other recipients?
Does the meet programme support the development of the club and welcome new members?
Is written guidance offered to members running meets to ensure that meets are safely run?
Are new members and novices safely catered for on meets?
If any training is offered, are those (either members or non members) offering training appropriately trained/experienced/knowledgeable?
Refer to the BMC Club Equipment Guidelines
Is the equipment appropriately stored and inspected?
Are results of inspections recorded and acted on?
Are instructions provided for safe use?
Are the club's officers aware of insurance requirements affecting the club, including:
Officers’ public liability
Members’ public liability
General duties of care
and need to communicate with the BMC in cases of uncertainty.
Refer to the Perkins Slade Insurance support
Is the hut insured and does the club diary ensure this is renewed annually?
Are all necessary steps taken to ensure the insurance cover is not unintentionally voided?
Is Duty of Care exercised in all of the club's activities?
Is the committee aware that the BMC should be advised of any event that might lead to a claim on its insurance?
Are minutes of committee meetings and AGMs held and accessible?
If the club has a property, are the deeds kept securely and is the location known?
Are at least six years' past annual accounts held securely as HMRC may require to see them?
Are all legal documents kept securely and the location known?
Are records of the history of the club kept? There is a wide interest in the history of climbing and of climbing clubs. Future generations may well be interested in the history of the club.